Monday, November 29

[단독] Tens of trillions of dollars have been spent… Moderna who applied for a patent without the US government

When American pharmaceutical company Moderna applied for a patent for a coronavirus vaccine, the U.S. government side was omitted. Tens of trillions of won was invested in the government budget, and why this happened, what Moderna was aiming for, and an exclusive interview with the consumer group that first exposed this fact.

This is Washington Correspondent Kim Soo-hyung.

Three key patent applications for mRNA coronavirus vaccines submitted by Moderna to the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office.

A top-secret technology that induces an immune response against coronavirus.

However, only scientists belonging to Moderna are listed in the patent inventors column, and the names of the three NIH researchers from the National Institutes of Health who participated in the joint development are not.

The names of the same researchers who President Biden praised for being at the forefront of developing a moderna vaccine are missing.

[코르벳/미국 국립보건원 연구원(지난 2월) : 우리가 백신을 만들기 위한 단백질을 만들어내는 방법을 알고 있었기 때문에 유전자 배열 결과를 얻어낼 수 있었습니다.]

[바이든/미국 대통령 : 이 연구팀은 정말로 대단합니다.]

The US consumer group Public Citizen, who first obtained and exposed Moderna’s patent application, pointed out that Moderna cannot claim to have made a vaccine with full support from the US government.

[자인 리즈비/퍼블릭 시티즌 연구원 : 국립보건원(NIH)은 (백신을 만드는데) 중요한 역할을 했습니다. 미국 정부는 모더나에 거의 12조 8천억 원을 지원했습니다. 회사 한 곳에 지원한 것으로는 엄청난 액수입니다.]

Zain Rizby Public Citizen Researcher
It analyzed that Moderna was the sole owner of all decision-making powers on vaccines.

[자인 리즈비/퍼블릭 시티즌 연구원 : 모더나는 누가 백신을 생산할 수 있고, 어떻게 생산해서 얼마에 팔 수 있는지도 독점적으로 통제할 수 있게 됩니다. 우리는 제약 회사가 이렇게 귀중하고 중요한 기술을 독점적으로 통제하는 것을 용인할 수 없습니다.]

The US government also explained why it should become a patent holder.

[자인 리즈비/퍼블릭 시티즌 연구원 : 미국 정부가 공동 발명자나 공동 소유자로 이름이 올라 있게 된다면, 정부가 그 특허를 다른 사람들이 쓸 수 있게 하는 게 가능합니다.]

Moderna is expected to earn 21.2 trillion won from coronavirus vaccines this year and 23.6 trillion won next year.

[자인 리즈비/퍼블릭 시티즌 연구원 : (모더나가) 백신을 보내는 결정을 한 곳은 압도적으로 부자나라가 많았습니다. 특히 백신에 공적 자금을 얼마나 받았는지 생각해보면 이것은 그냥 부당한 일입니다.]

Right now, we too are using a lot of moderna vaccines. Let’s talk a little more with Correspondent Kim Soo-hyung. Now, Correspondent Kim, the corona vaccine patent is going to cost a lot of money, and the US government is going to be angry.

How is Moderna responding?

Yes, after the public citizen’s disclosure, the New York Times and other American media have also reported on the case, so the controversy continues to spread.

Moderna, who had been silent, tweeted that she could not agree with the claim that the National Institutes of Health scientists co-invented a coronavirus vaccine.

The U.S. National Institutes of Health has also issued a warning letter to Moderna by the director himself, which is unusual.

[콜린스/미국 국립보건원 원장 : 저는 모더나가 중요한 역할을 한 사람들을 공동 발명자라고 인정하지 않는 심각한 실수를 했다고 생각합니다.]

We will need more vaccines in the future, but if there is a dispute over patents, that’s not good news.

Yes, it could make the vaccine recipe more difficult to disclose if a fight breaks out and Moderna wins.

Moderna CEO Stefan Bansel said in an interview with SBS that he would transfer the technology to Korea, but Public Citizen emphasized that the vaccine technology should be transferred to a country with production capacity like Korea as soon as possible.

Let’s hear the related remarks next.

[스테판 방셀/모더나 CEO (지난 5월, SBS 인터뷰) : 모더나는 삼성에 기술을 이전할 것입니다. 하지만 한국 정부는 이런 과정을 원활하게 하는 데 큰 역할을 할 수 있습니다.]

[자인 리즈비/퍼블릭 시티즌 연구원 : 한국을 포함해서 모더나는 지금까지 기술 공유하는 것을 거부했습니다. 코로나 백신은 전 세계에 최대한 빨리, 최대한 많은 양이 생산돼야 합니다.]

Concerns are being raised that Moderna and the U.S. government could fight a lawsuit against a global vaccine supply shortage, which could lead to even greater chaos.

(Video coverage: Park Eun-ha, video editing: Park Sun-soo)

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